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5/27/2014 6:00:00 AM
Utahn's Plan Makes Public Land Arizona's
Supervisors hear pitch for local control
Issue will only gain traction if elected officials raise awareness, advocate says
JC AMBERLYN/MinerElk graze in a meadow in the Kaibab National Forest near Williams in 2009. The San Francisco Peaks are visible in the background.
JC AMBERLYN/Miner

Elk graze in a meadow in the Kaibab National Forest near Williams in 2009. The San Francisco Peaks are visible in the background.
JC AMBERLYN/MinerTourists enjoy the spectacular sights of the Grand Canyon National Park in 2005.
JC AMBERLYN/Miner

Tourists enjoy the spectacular sights of the Grand Canyon National Park in 2005.

Matt Reinig
Miner reporter


KINGMAN - A Utah House representative who received $20,000 in campaign funds from oil, gas, nuclear, chemical, pharmaceutical, railroad and contracting companies says he wants to reduce pollution and conserve water and wildlife in the West.

At least that's what Ken Ivory told the Mohave County Board of Supervisors on May 19 when he said states should take over land in the West that's been under federal control, in some cases, even before Teddy Roosevelt was president.

And like other local and state governing bodies Ivory has campaigned to, he wants Mohave County leaders to make this a campaign issue like other western candidates during the upcoming elections.

Supervisors did not comment on Ivory's presentation. One resident offered public comment, saying federal control of public lands is more about the resources beneath them than protecting the wildlife upon them.

According to Ivory, the environment and economy will be better off if states can develop and use those currently untapped lands and resources, because the Bureau of Land Management's strategy simply isn't working.

"The wildlife and the watershed are still impaired," Ivory said, adding that there is also $100 trillion in untapped resources beneath federally controlled lands in the United States.

Ivory said there are legitimate concerns out there, such as over-development and selling off lands that would become private property and just as inaccessible as they are now under federal control.

However, he said, opening up these markets will allow local and state governments to address those issues themselves. He said he said he cares about this issue "tremendously."

"We can't afford not to do this. We have to pay for education, care for the environment, and care for the sick and poor," Ivory said. "Who better to balance those interests in Arizona, than Arizonans?"

Ivory sponsored a 2012 bill that passed in Utah petitioning for federal public lands in Utah to become state, multi-use public lands this year.

Other states are conducting studies of similar bills, including North Dakota, Nevada, Wyoming, Montana, Utah and South Carolina.

Americans share ownership of approximately 600 million acres of land and water in the United States, the vast majority of it in the West. The "public lands" include federal designations such as national parks, forests, wildlife refuges and monuments, as well as state and local areas owned by the public, according to the National Wildlife Federation.

The lands are managed by many different federal agencies for a wide variety of purposes, but the Department of the Interior and the Department of Agriculture bear most of the management responsibility.

The National Wildlife Federation works to redefine how energy development should occur on public lands in order to meet energy needs while sustaining the fish, wildlife, water resources and America's outdoor traditions, according to the NWF.

In addition to helping gain support for new public lands protections, the NWF defends special places from fragmentation and development of all kinds, such as preventing oil and gas drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, among others.

The NWF also works to make sure important renewable energy development, such as wind and solar, is sited properly and developed in a way that sustains wildlife, according to the organization.



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Reader Comments

Posted: Wednesday, May 28, 2014
Article comment by: V Stokes

"...according to the open meeting laws it was illegal for the supervisors to allow this person to speak...".

Please enlighten me? There was no discussion, there was no Q&A. Was it not on the agenda? What exactly was violated?

"Only the military should be armed, all others are unconstitutional."

So no citizen should be armed? Hmmm...how odd...


Posted: Wednesday, May 28, 2014
Article comment by: V Stokes

"...according to the open meeting laws it was illegal for the supervisors to allow this person to speak...".

Please enlighten me? There was no discussion, there was no Q&A. Was it not on the agenda? What exactly was violated?


Posted: Wednesday, May 28, 2014
Article comment by: az mac

The constitution does not allow the federal government to control land only the seas.
Most of the departments of the federal government are unconstitutional and should not exist. Only the military should be armed, all others are unconstitutional.
The federal government is supposed to be very small with little to do, that is why in the constitution it says congress has to meet at least once a year.
Not listed in the constitution then the federal government can not do it.


Posted: Wednesday, May 28, 2014
Article comment by: We The People{me} Thinking

Its all about the OIL!

Posted: Wednesday, May 28, 2014
Article comment by: Linda Athens

Hats off to Ken Ivory. I back him 100%. The National Wildlife Federation is a bunch of far left wing nuts.

When will you citizens ever wake up and see the light. Do you ever stay apprised of anything, ever try to see behind what is really going on? Apparently not and that is exactly why this country is going down so fast.

Every hear of Agenda 21? EVER check into the UN and see what they are really doing in our country? Nope, didn't think so.

The BLM needs to get the hell out of our lands and probably be shut down altogether.

The Organ mountains behind Las Cruces, now in the hands of the good old obama admin had huge crowds show up to fight against obama's people taking it over.

Guess who they were? But of course, Republicans from Dona Ana county who know the truth and see the light.

You people have no clue that the obama admin has a crazed plan to force rural people into cities, take over all the land and rivers via the environmental wackos. Think that sounds nuts?

Then YOU dig in and find out it is absolutely true.


Posted: Tuesday, May 27, 2014
Article comment by: Liberal Lion

Wow a reporter that actually does his homework. He won't be here long.

Posted: Tuesday, May 27, 2014
Article comment by: Just Curious

I tend to agree with the writers here 'Real meaning of local control' & FW, but I am curious about Representative Ivory's statement "The wildlife and the watershed are still impaired," What is his idea of the impairments?

Posted: Tuesday, May 27, 2014
Article comment by: BOS Being Played Like a Fiddle

Why the BOS is wasting time listening to a Utah representative? It has to pay Travis Lingerfelter to monitor our representatives because it doesn't have time but spends time listening to a Utah Rep. Our board should have given him the address of our state house and sent him on his way. It needs to concentrate on good-paying jobs here.

The board would be wise to require full disclosures from guys like this trotting in with whatever cure they offer us. Before allowing him to takes their valuable time they should know who is funding him and why he's bothering us.

Our BOS needs to be very skeptical about Utah Rep. Ivory. Is he a front for the oil, gas, or nuclear industry eager to get it's chops in these lands? Is he planning to launch a lucrative career in the chemical, pharmaceutical, railroad, or construction industry? Is he traveling around America advocating for America to loose its protected lands because all his work in making Utah a better place to live is over? Will he be given a juicy job once these lands are freed up to vulture capitalists?

So let's just say the board "acting in our best interest" decides to ask for control of all this land. How will they protect the land? Which Supervisor will position him/herself to benefit for the raping of this land?


Posted: Tuesday, May 27, 2014
Article comment by: The Fox Hound

Thanks Matt for a fair and balanced column about this issue. I don't know where they found you I'm just glad they did, so keep up the good work. This is what Kingman needs to bring it out of the dark ages that it has fallen into. It's so sad to me that some people in this state think that the federal govt. is our enemy. I do think that many changes need to be made in both state and Federal govt. but only one party is willing to compromise while the other one is gone so far right they just seem to want to take the ball and go home. Your generation has got to stop this nonsense before we become a third world country. The change will only come when we can read the truth in our local paper. Thanks for doing your part so intelligently.

Posted: Tuesday, May 27, 2014
Article comment by: Frederick D Williams

I the first place, according to the open meeting laws it was illegal for the supervisors to allow this person to speak, but since when did they ever allow the laws to stand in their way.
Second, It has to go before congress to allow the states to purchase federal lands and most of the states know they cannot afford to manage them. You gave them up years ago when you became a state, so live with it.

I wouldn't trust this state to manage it anyway. The first thing they would do is sell it to developers like Rhodes.


Posted: Tuesday, May 27, 2014
Article comment by: Real meaning of local control

I agree with Jason Marino. It's great to have a Miner reporter who takes the trouble to do a little background research instead of just taking statements from politicians at face value.

Demands for "local control" are often just a cover for handing over public lands to private developers in exchange for campaign contributions. Local governments don't have the resources to protect public lands, so developers are often anxious to get the feds out of the way. One way to do that is to grease the palms of politicians who then repay the developers by calling for "local control."


Posted: Tuesday, May 27, 2014
Article comment by: Jason Marino

I don't know where this new reporter came from, but I love this guy! Keep him around and let him write everything you've got. I've never seen such unbiased, consistent and deep coverage of subjects in this paper.

He quickly points out inconsistencies, collusion, and hypocrisy of the subjects in his stories.

Had he not opened with the paragraph he did, this story would have only served to lead those that follow the ideals espoused by the politician in the story to further think he is on their side, and that he's not just in it for the money (which he obviously is).

Bravo Matt Reinig, bravo!


Posted: Tuesday, May 27, 2014
Article comment by: Trained observer

I am sure that a lot of companies would welcome this. They can gain use of public lands at a reduced rate from what they would pay otherwise in the name of "energy." Did you ever notice that a lot of companies that work with mines or energy are foreign-owned? They have no commitment to the US and they are only here to make money. Most states and municipalities are struggling with the budget so I am not sure how turning the land over to them would work. In places like Mohave Co. it would mean more of the good ole boys helping their buddies. Don't buy into this nonsense of someone that gets political donations from energy companies is going to "save the environment" because we know that won't happen.

Posted: Tuesday, May 27, 2014
Article comment by: dv s

NO FEDERAL..!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!...

BLM...already way overreachIng...carrying AK-47s...Feds screw up everything they touch....!




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